Ohio Legislative Black Caucus President (OLBC) and State Rep. Alicia Reece (D-Cincinnati) released the following statement after joining Gov. John Kasich and her colleagues on the state’s 24-member Community-Police Relations Task Force today to present their recommendations on strengthening Ohio’s justice system:
“I am proud of our recommendations we put forth and believe they are the first step in restoring faith and trust in our justice system. I am also pleased that the governor used our work in Cincinnati as a model for a collaborative approach in implementing these recommendations at a statewide level.
“We need to hold this effort and public officials in our state accountable to ensure that the first step we took today is not the last, but the beginning of real and lasting reform. I am hopeful the legislature takes our findings seriously as well and works with us on justice reform bills to give our work the permanence and funding needed to make our communities open for people of all backgrounds to lead happy and productive lives free from fear.
“In addition to reforms in our justice system, we must also take seriously the need for economic reforms that level the playing field for all people—regardless of race—to have a fair shot at prosperity in our state. I look forward to seeing a report on our progress before summer begins.”
While serving as city councilwoman, Rep. Reece played an integral role in brokering Cincinnati’s 2002 police-community relations collaborative agreement following the city’s 2001 race riots sparked by the police shooting of 19-year-old Timothy Thomas.